Isobel’s life is falling apart. Her mom just married some guy she met on the internet only three months before, and is moving them to his sprawling, gothic mansion off the coast of nowhere. Goodbye, best friend. Goodbye, social life. Hello, icky new stepfather, crunchy granola town, and unbelievably good-looking, officially off-limits stepbrother.
But on her first night in her new home, Isobel starts to fear that it isn’t only her life that’s unraveling—her sanity might be giving way too. Because either Isobel is losing her mind, just like her artist father did before her, or she’s seeing ghosts. Either way, Isobel’s fast on her way to being the talk of the town for all the wrong reasons.
I hadn't heard anything about this book going into it. I loved the cover and that is initially what drew me to it (yes, I sometimes judge books by their covers).
The story is told from Isobel's perspective, and her narration throughout the book is laugh-out-loud hilarious at some points. She is very easy to relate to as a character. Then there's Nathaniel. He's her new stepbrother, and they don't get along at first mainly because of misunderstanding each other and miscellaneous other teenage emotional issues :-) Eventually they call truce and try to solve the mystery of what's really going on in the enormous and oldly creepy house they now share.
The story is a little scary at some points, but not too much. It's like mystery and romance with a side of creep thrown in. The interactions between Isobel and Nate were fun to read. I also loved the way Isobel talks about her stepdad, Dick. Obviously, I don't condone being attitudinal to parental figures, but if you read the book you'll see why that's not an issue here.
A great read. My only complaint would be that it had a very tidy ending. I guess I should make up my mind whether I like that or not. I'm either complaining that a book ended how I wanted or that it didn't :-) That doesn't detract from the book as a whole. Definitely one to check out.
Publication Date: January 3, 2012
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Mystery, Romance
Source: Thanks to publisher Simon & Schuster for my review copy.